Dragic's Left Eye Continues to Be (a) Hit

by Matt Petersen

Goran Dragic wouldn’t blame Suns fans if they got used to seeing bandages or stitches around his left eye.

When it comes to injuries, turns out that area of his face is a popular spot.

The Slovenian guard said Friday’s inadvertent elbow from Knicks center Tyson Chandler resulted in the fifth set of stitches he’s received around the left eye – including four times within the last calendar year.

Suns fans will remember two of the previous three occurrences. Dragic received the worse end of a collision with Blazers guard Mo Williams earlier this season, which required 13 stitches and significant effort to see through the swelling that blossomed over the following 24 hours.

Dragic needed a quartet of stitches – above that same left eye – after taking a charge on James Harden in April of last season.


As for the fourth time, that occurred while wearing Slovenia green last summer in an exhibition game leading up to EuroBasket 2013.

“It was against Ukraine,” Dragic said with a mockingly suspicious tone while looking toward Ukrainian teammate Alex Len (don’t worry, the elbow was from former Jazz big man Kyrylo Fesenko).

While this latest knock to the face didn’t boast nearly as much swelling – the stitches and bandaging were visibly minimal during the Suns’ loss to the Lakers on Sunday – Suns Head Coach Jeff Hornacek considers such facial ornaments as a positive sign of effort.

“We tell the guys that if you play hard, which Goran does, you’re going to get hurt a few times,” Hornacek said. “That’s alright. There’s nothing wrong with a couple knots on your head and a couple stitches. It shows the guys are playing hard. That’s Goran.”

Dragic doesn’t mind his latest set of stiches and likely scar, either.

“It’s going to be a nice reminder very time when I look in the mirror that I gave [the Knicks] 32 points,” Dragic laughed.